Kirtley Jarvis was born in Ontario. She has attended The Ontario College of Art and Sheridan School of Design. Her early work includes embroidery and quilt pieces. She has experimented with the embroidery technique “couching” which allows her to reproduce handwriting. She has also been producing non-textile work. Jarvis is a multiple time recipient of Ontario Council for the Arts grants as well as the Juror’s award at Fibreworks, Cambridge Libraries and Galleries (2001), the Award of Excellence, Ontario Crafts (1979), the Burlington Cultural Centre, Burlington, Ontario and others. Her award-winning textile work has been exhibited across Canada and can be found in private and public collections.